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November 1, 2017

Notary Public 101 — Real Life Notary Scenarios

Return to the table of contents of Notary Public 101

Knowing how to be a good notary is all fine and good. But, if you don’t know how to handle scenarios, you might get into some sticky situations.

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1. Confirming the signing
When you call the borrowers, go over the:
Date, Time, People Signing, Location, if there is a check or wired funds, if they have 90 minutes to complete a signing, and any fees that seem critical in the CD or HUD. Additionally, you should have them read the names in their ID to make sure they match, …read more…

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2. The name on the ID says John Smith
Q. The name on the ID is shorter or not matching the name on the document? What do you do?
A. Ask for other ID. If they don’t have it, if your state allows credible witnesses, use them to identify the signer. You can always… read more

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3. Rectify errors on Notary certificates
Most Notaries like to cross out and initial changes in certificates. Keep in mind that these are legal documents affecting million dollar properties. Cross-outs look like tampering. It is CLEANER to take a fresh acknowledgment form from your Notary bag … read more…

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4. The signer would not sign the flood disclosure.
If you go to a signing at 11am and the signer signs everything except the flood disclosure, what do you do? You call the contact person or people in title or lending. If they do not call you back, you cannot stay at the borrower’s house all day long. Let’s say you leave …read more…

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5. The green pen scenario
You go to a signing, open the package and the instructions read:
Sign in GREEN, don’t call unless it is an emergency, get it to Fedex on time or you are fired.
It is 5:30, last pick up is at 6:00pm. Nobody has a green pen. There is a stationery store in the same complex …read more…

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6. Ten grant deeds.
If you have one signer signing ten grant deeds, you need to do the following:
Create ten journal entries, one per person per document. Put thorough information about who the grantor and grantee is, a thumbprint, and …read more…

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7. The FBI is at your door.
What piece of information will they want from you if someone gave you a fake ID?
A journal thumbprint. If you don’t keep one, start now… read more…

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8. What types of pads of forms should a Notary keep in his/her bag?
Acknowledgments, Jurats, Copy Certifications. Skip the POA forms. Have them consult an Attorney. I carried permission for minors to travel. I created my own very thorough form with room for thumbprints. The Mexican authorities loved my form!… read more…

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9. Chad assigns a job to you. He says if there is a problem, call him and only him. If you can’t reach him, then email him. You get to the signing, the signer signs half the documents and then has a question. What do you do? Call Chad and if he doesn’t answer then email him. Many Notaries just don’t follow directions… read more…

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10. Frank does a loan signing on Monday and drops the package in the drop box at 3pm, calls in the tracking number and then wants to go camping. How many days should Frank wait before embarking on his camping trip and why? I think that Frank should wait until he confirms with the Lender that the package has been looked over in its entirety or… read more…

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11. What entities might want to see your Notary journal?
I have gotten in hundreds of arguments with notaries from states all over the county. Those who live in states where journals are not legally required think they will not get into trouble if they don’t have one. If you end up in court, your journal is your only evidence of what happened. You might become a witness for a long case or a defendant if … read more

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12. Hospital signing issues
Have you ever done a signing in a hospital? You should be prepared, because one day you might do it. There are many issues that come up in hospital signings. First of all, it is common to have to decline service because the signer has been medicated, or has lost their mind. As a Notary, you should be aware that you can easily be subpoenaed for hospital signings as it is common … read more

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13. How do you notarize a document with no signature line?
If you have been instructed to notarize a document that doesn’t have a signature line, that is a cross between a quandary and a conundrum. You cannot notarize a document without a signature. Notaries notarize signatures on documents, not documents, and especially … read more

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14. Sixteen year old Samantha calls a Notary to notarize an Affidavit for her mom who does not speak English. The Notary arrives only to find out that he/she cannot communicate directly with the signing who is the mother. Samantha offers to translate as she does that on a daily basis for her mom. What do you tell Samantha? In 49 states, direct ORAL communication with the client is required REGARDLESS of whether the document is in English, has been translated, or whether the Notary understands the document. You cannot use an oral translator except perhaps in Arizona (check AZ handbook for an accurate answer). Refer Samantha to find a Notary who speaks their language.

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15. John appears before you to sign a loan as an Attorney-in-Fact. He knows two verbiage variations for signing as an Attorney-in-Fact and wants to know which one to use. There are no written instructions. What do you do next? In this situation you have to call for instructions because POA verbiage is a matter of preference as there are eight legal verbiage variations for signing as an AIF. So, call the Lender or Title company in this case as the loan will not close if you did not use the verbiage of their choice!

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16. Credible Witnesses.
Jim appears before you to sign an Affidavit. But, he has no ID. What do you do? Many states allow for credible witnesses. Some states require two CW’s who must both know the signer while others allow for one that must know the notary and the signer. You can read up on your state specific rule on this convoluted subject of credible witnesses.

Also read – http://blog.123notary.com/?s=credible+witness

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17. Name two situations where you might need subscribing witnesses. Subscribing witnesses are witnesses that watch someone sign their name on a document. They are used for Proofs of Execution (look this one up in our Notary Acts section) and for Signatures by Mark or Signatures by X which is allowed in certain states (look up in our glossary.)

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18. The document is written in a language that the Notary does not understand. All states except for AZ require direct oral communication with the signer. However, written comprehension is a different ballgame and is very state specific. California only cares that the Notary notarizes the signature and doesn’t care if the Notary understands the document although the signer must understand what they are signing. However, other states can vary. Does your state require you to be able to read the language the document was written in? Look this one up in your handbook as we cannot help you in this matter because we don’t know!

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19. You have been instructed to notarize a form that does not have a certificate.
You are at a notarization and the instructions say, “Notarize this page.” However, there is no certificate wording on the page. What do you do now?

The Notary may not choose the Notary act as that might be construed as UPL. So, just ask the client or signer what act they want and then attach the corresponding certificate to the document. That’s all.

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20. Deeds of Reconveyence.
You go to a signing and one of the documents is a Deed of Reconveyance. Under the signature line has the word Trustee. Who is the Trustee, and do you notarize this document?

The Trustee is normally the Lender, but could also be the borrower if he has a company and is lending money to himself in another capacity. The Trustee could be anyone, so without specific instructions you should probably not have this form signed or notarized.

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Do you take control at a signing?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21104

Elite Certification will benefit you for the rest of your life
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20770

The Grace Period after your signing
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19465

10 ways female notaries can protect themselves
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19196

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September 8, 2023

What is a Notary Mentor and Why Do You Need One?

Filed under: General Articles — Tags: — Tom Wilkins @ 12:01 am

Diving into the world of notary services isn’t just about mastering legal protocols or understanding documentation nuances. There’s a subtle art to this profession, an expertise that often blossoms from experience and, more importantly, guidance. This brings us to an essential question: “What is a notary mentor?”

What is a Notary Mentor?

A notary mentor is an experienced notary public dedicated to offering guidance, advice, and unwavering support to newcomers in the field. These seasoned professionals have treaded the intricate paths of the notary world, accumulating a treasure trove of knowledge, insights, and best practices. They primarily share this wealth by guiding newer notaries in navigating challenges, ensuring they grow and flourish in their roles.

The Vital Role of a Notary Mentor

  1. Sharing Experiences: Every notary mentor has their own set of unique encounters and scenarios. Sharing these real-world examples aids mentees in understanding how to address unprecedented situations, offering a practical spin to theoretical knowledge.
  2. Skill Development: Whether mastering the art of stamping, understanding diverse documents, or building essential soft skills like effective communication, a mentor provides hands-on training.
  3. Networking: It’s often said – it’s not just about what you know but who you know. A seasoned notary mentor’s vast network can be a golden key for a newcomer.
  4. Ethical Guidance: With strict ethical codes governing the world of notarization, navigating these can be daunting. A mentor ensures the mentee understands and adheres to these pivotal standards.
  5. Building a Business: For those venturing as mobile notaries or establishing their services, business insights from someone experienced are invaluable.

The Impact of Having a Notary Mentor

  1. Faster Growth: Under the right guidance, new notaries can sidestep typical beginner errors, paving a robust career foundation. This makes one wonder again, “What is a notary mentor if not a catalyst for accelerated growth?”
  2. Confidence Boost: Armed with the knowledge that they have a mentor to consult, mentees often find their confidence levels soaring. This newfound confidence fuels better decision-making and a proactive work approach.
  3. Increased Opportunities: As highlighted earlier, mentors can open doors to their extensive networks, leading to many notary services evolving job opportunities or client introductions.

Discovering Your Notary Mentor

  1. Notary Associations: Many local or national notary associations offer mentorship programs or connections with potential mentors.
  2. Networking Events: Events focused on notaries or legal aspects are great. They provide a platform for professionals and beginners to interact.
  3. Online Forums and Groups: Several online platforms cater to notaries. Engage actively, and you might find a mentor willing to guide you.
  4. Direct Outreach: If there’s a seasoned notary you look up to, don’t hesitate to reach out. Share your admiration and your keenness to learn.

In wrapping up, “What is a notary mentor?” transcends a mere query. A notary mentor is a guiding light, a reservoir of wisdom, and a propellant for growth. As notary services evolve, having a mentor becomes even more pivotal.

Curious about niching down your services? Discover how can mobile notaries find a niche in our detailed guide.

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June 16, 2023

Conquering Challenges Encountered by Notaries

Filed under: Notary Public 101 — Tags: — Tom Wilkins @ 12:00 am

As a notary, do you feel overwhelmed with the sheer number of challenges and obstacles that stand in your way? Do you ever get discouraged when it seems like every day brings new problems to solve? It’s hard for business owners to keep up with the demands of making things run smoothly. Still, luckily there are several top issues affecting notaries that can be proactively addressed. In this blog post, we’ll discuss the key steps you should take to get past the most frequent problems notaries see and create solutions that will benefit you personally and professionally.

Lack of Training

One of the biggest challenges facing notaries is the need for proper training. Many become notaries without fully comprehending the job prerequisites, which may result in mishandling particular situations or unintentional errors that could lead to legal issues. To resolve this, notaries must enroll in top-notch training programs encompassing all the job’s crucial aspects. These programs will assist notaries in comprehending their duties and how to navigate complex scenarios. Additionally, keeping up-to-date with any changes to laws or regulations that could impact the job is critical for notaries.

Document Fraud

As a notary, it is crucial to be aware of document fraud as it is a significant issue affecting the work. Fraudsters can manipulate documents or forge signatures for their advantage. To ensure the authenticity of the document being notarized and the identity of the signer at hand, we must be diligent in confirming their credentials and examining the document in detail. This includes asking for government-issued photo identification and carefully scrutinizing the document for any signs of tampering. Notaries must refuse to notarize the document and report it to the proper authorities if suspicions arise.

Quality of the Notaries

This profession is highly concerned about maintaining quality standards for notaries. Sadly, not all notaries adequately fulfill their responsibilities or follow established protocols. This, in turn, can lead to errors and legal complications, potentially damaging both the notary and their clientele. To address these shortcomings, it is vital that the industry demand heightened requirements and underscore the significance of the role. Notaries must ensure they maintain their professionalism and uprightness at all times. Additionally, joining professional organizations can furnish valuable backing and materials to support notaries’ work and encourage best practices.

Lack of Time

Notaries frequently encounter time limitations when notarizing documents, which can cause stress and mistakes for both the notary and the signer. To address this issue, notaries should prioritize scheduling appointments in advance to allow ample time to complete their work without feeling rushed. Additionally, notaries must have all essential materials and paperwork readily available to promote efficient work. Overcoming time constraints ensures the accuracy and professionalism needed in this critical role.

State-Specific Laws

Keeping track of state-specific laws and regulations is essential for notaries, as each state has its own set of rules. But staying up-to-date can be challenging, especially with ever-evolving changes. To overcome this daunting task, notaries can boost their knowledge by constantly being aware of the laws and regulations in their state. Joining a professional organization on the subject can also offer valuable resources and support.

Take Action, Shape A Future Where Notaries Thrive With Unwavering Integrity

Overcoming any challenge a notary may encounter can be daunting but achievable. It starts with having the right mindset and knowledge to tackle the issues head-on. Identifying the top issues affecting notaries is essential to prepare for all scenarios thoroughly. Fortunately, success and excellence in notarization are obtainable through dedication and resilience. Improving the quality of the notaries should always remain the top priority. Take the time and effort to read up on industry regulations, laws, and information consistently to ensure one’s capability as an E-Notary public remains current and up-to-date with ever-changing practices today.

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October 23, 2020

123notary Elite Certification Study Guide

Filed under: Loan Signing 101 — Tags: , — admin @ 12:24 am

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ELITE CERTIFICATION

To get elite certification, you need to do well on the regular certification topics, and then know a lot more. Here are the items we quiz about for elite certification. We test by phone for the elite, and if you study hard and know your basic documents, scenarios, and Notary knowledge plus the content on this page, you could pass.

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Documents you have to understand intimately

Recorded Documents
Riders
Subordination Agreement
Residency Affidavit
Owners Affidavit
Deed of Reconveyance
Deed of Trust
CD & HUD-1
Please read the details of the required documents. Read more…

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Procedures or Acts to Understand

Signature by X or Mark — read more…
Apostilles and Authentications — read more…

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Other Terms or Information
Please click on the links below to get detailed information on the following points.

The term Elizor — read points 23 on this link. An Elizor is a court appointed official that can sign over property when the owner refuses to cooperate in court.

Explaining beneficial & financial interest. A Notary may not have beneficial interest or financial interest in anything he is notarizing. A beneficial interest could be construed as …

Federal Holidays in chronological order (memorize these). Let’s start with New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King Day, Washington’s Birthday, Memorial Day, Independence Day …

Fraud Prevention & types of fraud that happen in the Notary world. Falsified identification, incorrect dates on certificates, using someone else’s Notary seal …

Authority – Who has the highest level of authority if there is a question about a notary act or document at a signing? The Notary is the authority as to how a notary transaction happens, but…

Annual Percentage Rate — a detailed understanding is required. The APR is based on the amount borrower after certain (but not all) fees and closing costs have been deducted, and expressed as a …

Pros & Cons: — Adding an Acknowledgment rather than fixing the original. if there is a mistake on a preprinted form. It is cleaner to add a new form, but there can be recording fee issues involved…

What to do if John & Sally’s names are inscribed in an Acknowledgment by the Lender and Sally can’t make it. — Cross out or add a new form? This is similar to the last point, but there are some extra snags…

Handling name variations and discrepencies such as: ID Name, vs. Typed Name, Signature on Doc, and Name on Ack. Relationship between these names if they don’t exactly match. The main thing is to obey the law first…

Understanding dates such as: Transaction Dates, Signature Dates, Rescission Dates, and Document Dates… A transaction date is the same as a signature date, but a document date is arbitrarily chosen, but by whom?

Loan Signing FAQ’s that Borrowers ask. FAQ’s have been greatly reduced by Lenders being required to explain documents to the borrowers in advance. But, you still might be asked why the APR is …

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October 12, 2020

Certain things you don’t learn from experience

Filed under: General Articles,Popular on Facebook (some) — admin @ 10:53 pm

Notaries who have a lot of experience seem to forget that you can keep doing the same thing wrong for twenty years and nobody will correct you. People with thirty years of experience often know less than beginners. But, how is this so?

1. Document knowledge
If you want to know more about documents, you can read loan signing courses. You can also read the actual documents. Be aware that many documents have document variations and one document name could have multiple meanings. Therefore you need to be aware of all of the potential meanings and assume the possibility that the document might be completely different from what it normally means as well. Many Notaries go through their careers never reading documents yet claiming “familiarity with the docs.” If you don’t read them then you are only familiar with the names of the documents and not the actual content of the documents.

2. Handling situations
As a signing agent, there are many tricky situations you can get into. Experience might help you to figure out how not to botch certain situations, but might not teach you how to handle less obvious situations. Our course Notary Public 101 goes over twenty common situations where Notaries can get into trouble. No Notary on our site does a thorough job confirming the signing without reading our course. I suggest reading up on handling situations.

3. Notary knowledge
You cannot know the rules of notarizing or know how to explain specific notary acts unless you read about it. You might have performed 50,000 notarizations, but if you performed them wrong, then the experience is worth nothing, or might be counterproductive. Reading up on notary procedure and law might be a good idea. After all, you are handling legal documents.

4. Marketing
Many Notaries go through their career doing the minimum in marketing. You might make a lot more money if you took marketing a lot more seriously. We have many blog articles on the topic.

5. Thinking about danger
What if you are in a house and the borrower goes psycho. That doesn’t happen often. There are techniques for handling danger. Some Notaries sit closest to the door, or at a particular angle from the door so they can see who is coming in. Other Notaries can spot a house with health hazards a mile away and redirect the signing to Starbucks. I’m not sure if there are any good guides to dealing with notary danger, but you can surely try to think of all the possibilities before you go out on a job. Otherwise you have to improvise at the last minute like a comedian doing improv at the Improv!

You might also like:

Real life scenarios at loan signings
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19681

The five year rule of notary experience
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21089

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October 1, 2019

Getting paid – a comprehensive timeline

Filed under: Marketing Articles — admin @ 11:17 pm

Many Notaries have a problem getting paid. It’s not you — it’s the industry. But, by using good principles, you can avoid most of the drama. Here are some guidelines to help you through every step of the process.

BEFORE THE SIGNING
When you get that call from a particular company, you need to either have records on each company out there, or be able to look them up. That means you either need online records on a cloud, or accessible from your iPhone, or have a cheat sheet in your glove compartment with up to date records on all signing companies. You need to keep track of:

1. How many jobs have they given you
2. Payment record — average # of days to pay
3. How much outstanding
4. Are they pleasant to work for
5. Cancellation rate.
6. What is their track record on the forums and 123notary’s list of signing companies.

If company cancels too much, you should up their rate or make them pay a cancellation fee or nonrefundable deposit up front, otherwise you will be left holding the bag (and the freshly printed documents.) If a company owes you more than a few hundred, you should deny service until they pay up. If a company has no track record with you, please consider asking them to pay up front via Paypal. If you are a newer signing agent and desperate to get experience, you should be more flexible and take more risks so you get experience. People who use 123notary reward Notaries for having a lot of experience.

You can check new companies on your iPhone while on the road to see how they do on the various forums and 123notary’s list of signing companies with reviews. If a company has a bad track record of payment, you should charge up front or you will likely get stiffed. Some of these companies have no remorse.

CONFIRMING THE SIGNING
Confirming the signing using our tips in the real life scenarios section of Notary Public 101 will not help you get paid, but will help you reduce the amount of signings that end in mid-air. If the signer doesn’t have ID with matching names, or if the other signers aren’t going to be there, or if they don’t have that cashier’s check they need — you are better off not going to their house as it will be a waste of time. Signings that end in “no signs” often do not get paid, so by avoiding this type of scenario, you will have less unpaid jobs as a total percentage.

AT THE SIGNING — MISTAKES
Most Notaries brag about how they have a 99.9% accuracy rate. The truth is that most Notaries make mistakes from time to time, and sometimes FedEx or the Lender screws up too resulting in a second trip. In my experience it is very hard to get paid for a second trip. Companies will often offer to pay, and then not pay you. So, triple checking your work and getting packages to FedEx fast will help reduce your rate of non-paying jobs and also help you from getting fired as much.

AFTER THE SIGNING — FAX
After you are done with your signing, fax a bill and include all pertinent information such as the borrower’s name, property address, loan number, and whatever else the signing or title company wants. Send a bill every week by fax or email or whatever medium your company wants. Also, keep records of every signing company you work for, and all of the jobs they assigned to you. When they pay you, you can indicate the date when they paid you to the right of the job description, borrower name, property address on your records. Your records can be paper or online. It is very fast to do this by paper by the way and less chance of data loss unless you keep the paper in your car.

EVERY MONTH — RECORDS
Every month or so, update your records that you keep in your car. Keep records on each signing company. Track how many jobs they gave you, how fast they pay, what they still owe you, how much you like them. You can assign them a grade too. You can have a customized pricing strategy for each company depending on their track record. You can give lower prices for companies you like. I would base prices on estimated time spent and NOT a fixed price. You could have a — near, medium and far price, or a price that is more intricate depending on number of pages, number of signers, distance, time of day, etc. That is up to you. But, having an intricate pricing strategy will make your life a little more complicated, but will weed out the more difficult companies, or at least make them pay for grief they cause you. Otherwise, those companies will think they can get away with causing Notaries endless headaches. You could keep two sets of these records and update them monthly. One at home and one in the car. If someone offers you a job, don’t quote a price until you look at your records and see if they are on the “A” list.

30 DAYS
If a company is past 30 days, time to consider sending them a demand letter. Or you could wait until the 45 day mark depending on how tough you are. We have a demand letter (from hell) template on our resources page. People have had consistently excellent luck with it, and it was given to us by our very most seasoned Notaries on the site.

45-60 DAYS
If anyone gets to this point, definitely send them a demand letter, but consider hiring an Attorney to write a letter threatening them. There are Attorneys who will write a letter for about $30 using their legal assistants. If a company owe you $300 or more, it might be worth it to write a letter. You can also charge for damages which include your time lost and legal fees.

CONTRACTS
We wrote another article on contracts. Signing companies have contracts to protect their interests. Their contract defends what is convenient and good for the signing company but not what is good for the Notary. You can have your own contract too and make people sign it if they want your services. If you are inexperienced, many companies might not sign it. But, if they need you and you have experience, they just might. You can state terms about partial signings, no shows, cancelled jobs, printing fees, resigns, and whatever else you want. Try to be reasonable in your terms if you expect anyone to sign it and continue using your services.

CREDIT
Try to determine before hand how much credit to offer to particular companies. This needs to be customized. Companies with a bad track record should not get any credit and must pay up front. Companies that have been solid towards you for years might get $400. But, don’t offer more than that because good companies turn bad all the time the minute they run into credit problems. Each company you work for should have a credit rating with you and an individual amount of credit you will offer them. When they offer you a job, see how much they are in debt to you already before saying yes, otherwise — it’s Paypal — or no job!

Trouble getting paid?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=15339

Tips for getting paid
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19794

Scary results when someone uses our demand letter from hell
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=2006

Template for our famous demand letter
http://www.123notary.com/howto-get-paid-signing-agent.htm

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September 15, 2019

5 Undeniable Benefits of Hiring a Personal Injury Lawyer

Filed under: Other Guest Bloggers — admin @ 11:24 pm

Accidents are inevitable no matter how careful you are. You get out of some encounters without a scratch while some can end your career and even life. Whichever is the case, experts recommend getting the assistance of a lawyer to deal with such scenarios. Olympia Injury Lawyers is one of the most successful law firms in Washington that offers free consultation to anyone who needs their help. You can also visit their website for counselling and take advantage of these benefits.

They Take Your Stress
If you just faced an accident, you wouldn’t be in the condition to deal with legal matters. People don’t easily give up where there is money involved. You will most probably have to fight in order to get your right from the insurance company. Many get overwhelmed by the stress and don’t proceed further. An injury lawyer will take your stress upon himself.

You Get Better Offer
Even when the company agrees to pay you, they will do everything they can to minimize that amount. Unless you know how to negotiate with them, you won’t get your due right. A professional injury attorney would know every trick and how to encounter them. They will ensure that the company can’t trick or distress you into taking a small amount. Not only that, they are likely to get you more than what you expect. It is a part of their job to condescend the opposing party and force them into the settlement of your desire.

No Legal Issues
One wrong word can cost you the entire case. There are many trivial legal matters one has to take into account when dealing with an insurance company to get a settlement. An attorney will make sure you complete all legal requirements and don’t say anything you’re not supposed to. He will plan everything from the start and prepare you for the worst. He will be there to protect you from their tricks and stop you from getting overwhelmed.

Case May Go to Trial
Most injury cases are easily settled, but it doesn’t mean these cases never to go to trial. A layman tries his best to avoid a trial, especially when he doesn’t have a lawyer. The other party may take advantage of this fear and force you into agreeing to its terms. There won’t be such a case if you acquire the assistance of an injury lawyer in the beginning. The insurance company also wants to avoid trial and may offer a better settlement. If push comes to shove, you know you are more than ready to face trials with a professional lawyer by your side.

Save Your Time
You will find yourself surrounded by a lot of work when you file for a claim. You have a personal and professional life to maintain even with issues the accident may have caused. On top of that, having to deal with more paperwork and meetings could be too much for you. A personal injury lawyer will take care of everything giving you time for yourself and other matters.

Please also see:
Olympia Injury Lawyers

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June 11, 2019

A Los Angeles detective seizes two journals and complains about a blurry thumbprint

Filed under: Notary Mistakes — admin @ 10:14 pm

Yes people, it really happened. A Los Angeles Notary notarized the wrong person. That person was committing some type of fraud. The next thing you know, some detectives were banging on her door. She had to let them have two of her journals. But, that was not good enough for the detectives. They went through a long whining session.

One of the thumbprints taken by the Notary was blurry. How can you do forensics on a blurry thumbprint? Why was that Notary so lazy that they could not take a proper thumbprint? It’s not rocket science — you just push down — and that’s it. Take thumb, press down in ink pad, rise thumb, press straight down on journal thumbprint designated space, feel good, that’s all.

Then on another journal entry, there was no thumbprint, and trust me, the detectives complained a whole lot about that.

So, if you are Notaries and say, “You’re being too picky Jeremy, and besides, my state doesn’t require that.” There are real reasons why I make the recommendations that I do, and it is not just to give you a hard time. You can get in real trouble without thumbprints and proper journal work. Don’t let it happen to you.

You might also like:

Why keep a journal? Don’t wait until you get a call from the FBI.
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19377

All Mortgage fraud is investigated by the FBI
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20995

Scenarios – the FBI is at your door and wants your journal
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20013

Do you keep a journal to please the NNA, the FBI, or yourself?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19483

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March 15, 2019

Dr. Phil moderates dispute: Notaries vs. Signing Companies

Dr. PHIL: You have asked me to moderate your ongoing dispute between Notaries and signing companies. I hope that we will have a fruitful session and resolve some of your issues.

FRANK: Thank you Dr. Phil. We Notaries have been complaining for years about low-ball fees. We are sick of it and want to get paid what we deserve.

SAMANTHA: Thank you Dr. Phil. We signing companies used to have better quality Notaries to work for us. In the last several years, the quality keeps going down and down. We feel we shouldn’t have to pay much money to these Notaries who in our opinion, should not be commissioned in the first place.

FRANK: If you want better quality Notaries you are not going to get them based on what you pay.

SAMANTHA: Well, if you want more money, you won’t get it with your communication and notary skills.

Dr. PHIL: Which came first, the chicken or the egg? This conversation isn’t going anywhere. Now, Frank, I don’t know what your level of competency is as a Notary Public. If you want to get paid good money, you have to be good at what you do.

FRANK: Oh, I’m good at what I do.

SAMANTHA: No he’s not. He claims to be good at what he does. We tested him and he got 30% on our test which is so easy, high-school student could pass. We only hire him because the other Notaries are either just as bad, or charge a lot more.

Dr. PHIL: Too bad you don’t get paid for deluding yourself, you’re good at that. Now, you think you are good at what you do, but Samantha here has given you a standardized test and you failed. How can you call yourself a great Notary when you failed a very basic sounding standardized test?

FRANK: Well that’s because I’m anything but a standard Notary. And by the way, you’re just as bad as she is.

Dr. PHIL: Well, what do you think your average standard person is going to think if they know you failed your test?

FRANK: They’ll think I’m an idiot.

Dr. PHIL: So, do you think someone functioning at the level of an idiot deserves high pay? Do you think they deserve to be hired at all? Would you hire someone who failed a professional exam?

FRANK: Oh, well now that you put it that way. Hmmm. Well I thought I was good at what I did. I don’t get complaints?

Dr. PHIL: You have a complaint sitting right next to you. Do you think you’re being honest with yourself?

FRANK: In all honesty, yes… wait, can I start being honest now? Well at least I thought I was being honest with my self.

Dr. PHIL: The fact remains that you are not honest with yourself about how you are severely lacking in your knowledge of notary and signing basics. Those that hire you are not happy about that fact. They will never pay you much as long as you don’t live up to their expectations.

FRANK: What about my expectations?

SAMANTHA: We put up with this type of attitude to save $50 per signing. If we didn’t do that, we would not be able to turn a profit.

Dr. PHIL: Well you get what you pay for. Frank here is not living in reality and exhibits no willingness to learn his profession to the point where he seems hireable. Now, let me ask you a few questions Samantha. How often do the Notaries you hire make mistakes and what are the potential damages to your finances when they do make mistakes? Try to give me as many realistic scenarios as possible.

SAMANTHA: When we hire new Notaries, we screen them out first to get rid of the ones that sound really bad on the phone. The ones we hire, we encounter a 3% error rate, at least with the new hires.

Dr. PHIL: And what are the damages?

SAMANTHA: It’s really hard to say. Sometimes we have to resign. Other times we have to redraw documents. Once , a client lost his lock. But, in one isolated incident, an identity thief was notarized with a fake ID that a good Notary would have spotted. That cost us $20,000 and time in court.

Dr. PHIL: So, that sounds dangerous to me. What is the average cost of a notary mistake, all factors considered?

SAMANTHA: After doing the math, it looks like the average mistake might cost $400. Since mistakes only happen 3% of the time the cost per average job hiring questionable notaries might be $12. We are saving a lot more than $12 to hire cheaper Notaries so it seems worth it to me.

Dr. PHIL: What about the cost to your reputation and the risk of losing clients because you hire less than perfect Notaries?

SAMANTHA: That is always an issue, but since we clean up problems quickly, we haven’t lost more than a few clients. But, that does seem to be a bigger issue. How many Title Company clients have we lost due to the quality of the Notaries we have hired, and how many more would we retain or attract if we used better Notaries. It might be worth $30 extra to hire a better Notary.

FRANK: Now, I’m out of business for sure.

SAMANTHA: Unless you study. It wouldn’t kill you to crack a book.

FRANK: It might.

Dr. PHIL: It looks like we have had a good discussion here. I have learned something, and I think you, Samantha have learned more about the various factors in this complicated equation of who you hire, how much you pay them, and why. Now, Frank, have you also learned that you need to study more to be able to pass standardized tests to make a good impression on people who hire you?

FRANK: 123notary is the only entity who has quizzed me recently, and they are a directory. They don’t even hire people. I don’t think anyone else cares if I know anything, so why should I care?

Dr. PHIL: If you want to get more work at higher prices, you should care. I read an article that says that 123notary certified signers make $8 more per signing and get a heck of a lot more work.

You might also like:

Marriage Therapy for Notaries
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21220

Bikers on Boats; Notaries heisting signatures
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21160

Notarization on the Steve Harvey Show
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=13704

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December 19, 2018

Beginner Notaries 103 — Additional Reading List

Filed under: General Articles — admin @ 12:52 pm

Beginner Notaries 103: Additional Reading List
Return to Table of Contents – Beginner Notaries 103

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Are you starting out as a mobile notary and don’t know which direction to turn? We know where you should turn and what you should read. So, indulge yourself in this reading list.

How to write a great notes section if you are a beginner
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=16698

Notary information for beginners — best posts
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=10472

Why you should consider getting 123notary Elite Certified
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20094

Real Life Notary Scenarios
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19681

The 123notary 30 point course
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=14233

Signing Companies that hire new Notaries
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=7059

How to become a successful mobile notary from scratch
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=13340

Is having an NNA background check necessary for work?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=10385

How to write a notes section if you have no experience
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=4173

5 or 6 reviews doubles your business
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=8484

A comprehensive guide to Notary pricing
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=16504

10 ways female notaries can protect themselves
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19196

Signing Agent Best Practices
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=4315

Basic technical information for new Notaries
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=10472

Cattle Call Notary Offers
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=9841

$30 loan signings — is it worth it?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=10456

2014 excerpts from great notes sections
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=13613

Wannabe #1 on 123notary? Consider this first
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=9332

What’s your monthly marketing plan?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=9683

Names for Notary businesses with commentary
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20765

Tips for avoiding liability with the elderly
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20040

How much E&O do I need?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20183

Who is the authority at a signing?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20175

What’s your sign? A guide to spotting fake ID
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19638

Winging it as a Notary
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19644

If you are named as an identity theft conspirator, you could pay $20,000 in legal fees
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19481

13 ways to get sued as a Notary
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19614

10 risks of being a mobile notary public
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19459

Airplane meals vs. Oaths and Affirmations
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19549

Ken’s list of things Notaries might goof on
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19427

Most of what Jeremy and Carmen at 123notary offer all day is free!
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19359

When to refuse a notarization – a comprehensive guide
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18974

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